Where has the music gone? I mean the kind we made ourselves. When I was growing up in a tiny country church, we had “special music” every Sunday morning AND every Sunday evening. My dad, the pastor, had to arrange for all of it, and I remember him calling up different ones asking them if they would sing. Sometimes it was a couple, sometimes a ladies’ duet or trio, or a solo, and not infrequently it was some of us kids singing duets or trios. This is how my sisters and I got started—singing with each other, with friends and later with our mom. We had those old “Favorites” songbooks we’d pore through, finding just the right song to sing. And if it coordinated with the sermon, all the better.
That church was too small for a choir, but in the next church Dad pastored, we had an occasional choir. And in the next one, Mom started and maintained a choir which she directed.
Music that we made was an important part of our worship. Why? Well, here are some possible reasons:
–It allowed us to develop and use our giftings for the Lord, even if we were not professional quality. (You know the saying, “If only the best birds sang, the forest would be silent.”)
–It got us involved serving in the church, feeling a part of it. We were active, not passive.
–It familiarized us with songs beyond those in our hymnbooks, those not designed for congregational singing. I have a wealth of songs in my mind and heart from childhood—hundreds and maybe thousands.
–Some of us learned to sing parts. (Unfortunately that didn’t include me—I’ve always stuck to the melody.)
How many churches have “special music” nowadays? Why? Are we missing out on something? Does this affect us spiritually? What do you think?